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Col Abraham Buford

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Col Abraham Buford

  • Birth 21 Jul 1747 Culpeper, Culpeper County, Virginia, USA
  • Death 30 Jun 1833 Scott County, Kentucky, USA
  • Burial Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky, USA
  • Memorial ID 66002350

Continental Army officer during the American Revolutionary War, most known as commanding officer during the "Waxhaw Massacre".

Born in Culpeper County, Virginia, he organized a company of minutemen upon the outbreak of war in 1775, eventually rising to the rank of colonel by May 1778. Assuming command of the 11th Virginia Regiment in September, he would be assigned to the 3rd Virginia Regiment in April 1780 and sent south to relieve the British siege of Charleston, South Carolina.
He was forced to withdraw following the surrender of Charleston on May 12, and the 3rd Virginia Continentals were trapped on May 29 by British and American Loyalist forces under Col. Banastre Tarleton who demanded his surrender. When he refused, Tarleton ordered an assault that was so deadly and with so many casualties to his men Colonel Buford was forced to surrender. However, the British forces continued their attack against the American force as many soldiers were bayoneted to death as they attempted to surrender (which was how it became known as the "Waxhaw Massacre" or "Buford's Massacre"). "Tarleton's Quarter" (which means give no quarter) was an American battle cry in the South

Buford escaped on horseback with his remaining men and was not held culpable for the massacre and continued to serve as an officer in the Continental Army through the Battle of Yorktown.
He eventually retired to the Bluegrass region of Kentucky on military bounty lands in excess of several thousand acres where he helped found that state's race-horsing industry and where he lived until his death at his home which he called "Richland" (National Register of Historic Places) in Scott County, Kentucky on June 30, 1833.
He and his wife Martha were orginally buried at their estate, but they were moved when the cemetery opened.
On Flag Day, June 14, 2006, descendants of Lt. Col. Banastre Tarleton returned Col. Buford's regimental flags taken at the Waxhaw Massacre to the United States and sold them at Sotheby's New York for over $5,000,000 (US).
Col Buford was one of six sons of John and Judith Early Beaufort (Buford), all of whom served with distinction as officers during the American Revolution. Their Civil War descendents were US Major Generals John Buford, Jr., noted for his service at the Battle of Gettysburg; Napoleon Bonaparte Buford; and CS General Abraham Buford.



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  • Created by: Julia Gray Carswell Sweitzer
  • Added: 22 Feb 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 66002350
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Col Abraham Buford (21 Jul 1747–30 Jun 1833), Find A Grave Memorial no. 66002350, citing Georgetown Cemetery, Georgetown, Scott County, Kentucky, USA ; Maintained by Julia Gray Carswell Sweitzer (contributor 47238697) .